(1st Legislative District) – Senator Jeff Van Drew and Assemblymen Nelson Albano and Matt Milam today applauded state Attorney General Anne Milgram and her staff upon learning that the person responsible for the illegal dumping of medical waste that washed up on New Jersey’s beaches last week has been charged.
Thomas McFarland, a dentist from Philadelphia who owns a summer home along the Jersey Shore, was charged today with intentionally dumping medical waste which caused the beach closings in Avalon, Cape May County.
Following last week’s beach closures, the lawmakers announced their intention to introduce legislation to toughen penalties against illegal ocean dumping. State penalties for water pollution haven’t been updated since 1990, while those for illegal medical waste handling haven’t been updated since 1997.
The lawmakers released the following joint statement:
“The Attorney General and her staff deserve praise for the speed and efficiency with which they conducted this investigation.
“Everyone who loves New Jersey’s beaches can now enjoy these last remaining summer weekends without fear that their favorite beach will be closed because of this individual’s selfishness and irresponsibility.
“With the person behind this disgusting act identified, we need to turn our attention to strengthening the state’s hand in dealing with polluters who foul our beaches and cause tremendous economic and environmental harm to our state.”